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Our 
Story

With knowledge & experience, I believe everyone has the ability to & can feel empowered in improving their health & life. Feeling safe to & trusting in slowing down, deeply resting & pouring back into themselves before giving out to others. 

I truly believe if we don’t choose to rest, our body will choose for us in the form of illness or disease, & it will probably be a really inconvenient time.

~ Steph

After many years dancing, in the performing arts and dealing with constant rejections and doubts about body image. I moved into fitness coaching, instructing and personal training. Here I was surrounded by people working on themselves, ready to change and taking control of their health & fitness.

 

During my time in the fitness industry I discovered physiotherapy, learning & understanding the body in more depth. Gradually leaving the fitness industry and moving into the NHS as a physio assistant to get my foot in the door & some experience. With two years working on respiratory, stroke & general medicine wards I progressed to a Therapy Assistant practitioner, taking this opportunity to become flexible staffing whilst starting my Physiotherapy degree in 2017.

 

As someone who was never interested in going to university, I found it hard restarting & suddenly immersed again in an environment set on achievements & performing. Studying physio & being on placements within the NHS setting brought on many stresses. My own self-beliefs and confidence came to the forefront during this degree, constantly questioning how well I was doing, if I was doing enough, more so if I was doing anything wrong & the consequences being ‘wrong’ could lead to. 

 

I found myself becoming more anxious and stressed, trying to achieve and ‘do well’, which manifested itself as a racing heart and sweaty palms. Now looking back, it makes sense, my body was in fight/flight a lot of the time, particularly being in London too.

 

Then in March 2020, the world shut down. I moved back to Peterborough to have some familiarity around family. During this time, I worked full-time in the NHS and went on the professional register early to support as a physiotherapist. I remember one day working in ITU, fully gowned, gloved and masked up, struggling to breathe myself as I was supporting someone on a ventilator into a prone position/on the front. I remember the tightness of the mask & having my mouth wide open, feeling the dryness from mouth breathing but stuck as there was no other way to breathe, breathing in and out through my nose felt suffocating. 

 

In October 2022 I fully left the NHS, in pursuit of moving to Canada. Three weeks before leaving I realised working full time in an acute setting was part of what was causing me more stress & moving across the world to do that, without support of friends & family was no longer an option. The thought of being back in that environment brought on chest tightness & a feeling of difficulty getting enough air when I breathed.

 

Since then I have spent time looking at myself, my inner world, in psychotherapy questioning my beliefs and everything I had learnt. My first experience of breathwork was with Wim Hof and in particular conscious connected breathing. I had some powerful experiences but always felt something was missing, for me it lacked the science behind it. On a ‘breath’ retreat I experienced the Buteyko method for the first time, fully understanding more about my own breath & how it was contributing to worsening anxiety, stress & poor sleep. I spent many years with worsening sleep, snoring, waking with a dry mouth & waking up during the night gasping for air. 

 

After some research, I found Buteyko Clinic International & Patrick McKeown. First training in the Buteyko method & then months later returning to train in Oxygen Advantage. Founding The Breathing Way in 2023, going self-employed & focusing on preventative health & wellness. Empowering adults & children with coaching on how to improve their health, well-being & sleep with science backed breathing exercises.

I now work with clients who are ready to make a change in their life & committed to improving their health, wellness & performace, whether personal, activity or work related.

Steph                 🌿

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